Asking the Right Questions

October 06, 2010

A short story I wrote for The prompt was, 'The title has to be Asking the Right Questions.'

She came and sat next to me everyday, as I read my morning paper in the garden. I guess she thought me to be a knowledgeable person, considering the fact that my glasses were what they called vintage, and I don’t believe in dying the grey hair that have sprouted on my head. Maybe she thought I was once a woman of substance, who defied the standards kept in our world that men were superior. And now when that age of defiance had passed, I could be consulted on how I reached that point in my youth.
Whatever the reason was, she would be there. Like clock work, the minute I would sit on that cement bench, and lift the daily news, I would glance to my left and she’d be there.
One day as we performed the same ritual of sitting next to each other, she turned to me and asked me, ‘Do you have any regrets?’ As I looked up at her from above my glasses, looking quite like the typical school teacher I’m sure, she explained. ‘It’s just something I have been asking myself, so I thought I’d ask you as well.’
I took just a few seconds to answer this. And the reason was that I had asked myself this question many times. I said, ‘Honey, I will always have one regret in life. And unfortunately, I will never know what it is.’
As she looked extremely confused, I went on. ‘There will always be a person I met in my life, whom I loved and didn’t express it to. There will always be a place I always wanted to visit and couldn’t go. There will always be something I did, which I felt bad about later on. But all these I don’t regret, because all those were my decisions, and I accept them. But this feeling of regret will still be a part of me.’
‘So, how will you find out what it is? ‘She asked, eager to give this discussion a concrete ending, like a school girl watching a teen flick, waiting for the protagonist and his love interest to have that final climatic kiss.
‘The only time I will realize what I regret in my life, is when I am about to die, and my life flashes in front of me. And that’s what scares me most about death.’
I smiled and went back to reading the latest news. I could see her sitting and staring into space from the corner of my eye.
She never asked me any questions after that. But she still came and sat next to me every day. I guess it’s true what they say- some habits are hard to change.

You Might Also Like


Thanks for stopping by! :)